MIAMI – After more than a year’s delay, Bahrain International Airport (BAH) has announced it will open its US$1.1bn new terminal building on January 28.
As quoted in an Airport World report from today, the Bahrain Airport Company (BAC) said, “moving operations to the new state-of-the-art facility is a major step towards achieving the Kingdom’s ambitious Economic Vision 2030,” which consists on “diversification and sustainability goals and developing Bahrain’s position as a financial, cultural, and aviation centre in the region.”
BAH’s new terminal is an integral part of that vision, and a key part of the Modernization Program, which is designed to “enhance the airport’s strategic position, stimulate national economic growth, and drive investment into the Kingdom,” the portal stated.
New Terminal ‘Four Times Larger’ Than Current Facilities
Bahrain’s Minister of Transportation & Telecommunications and BAC chairman Kamal bin Ahmed Mohammed expressed confidence that the new terminal will contribute towards trade, tourism growth, and travel for the “decades to come.”
With an area of 210,000sqm, the new facilities are four times larger than the existing ones, increasing the airport capacity to 14m passengers a year.
The terminal includes, per the portal, “eight baggage reclaim belts; 104 check-in counters; 36 passport control offices; a total of 20 e-gates for arrivals and departures; a 4,780sqm Departures Hall; 6,600sqm Arrivals Hall and 10,002sqm of retail space.”
It will also have a duty-free area three times larger than the one in the current terminal, a hotel, and a medical clinic, with a dedicated team of healthcare providers.
A Year+ to Open
According to arabianbusiness.com, before the Pandemic, a group of Bahraini lawyers pushed the government to delay the opening of the kingdom’s new airport terminal, claiming it would not be ready in time for the deadline set for the third quarter of 2019, according to a report by the Gulf Daily News (GDN) website.
MP Mohammed Al Abbasi proposed January 2020 as the new opening date; however, COVID-19 was looming and the date was pushed back. The Bahrain International Airport Modernization Program is billed as one of the most important national developments in the Kingdom.
Featured image: Bahrain International Airport new terminal: Photo: BAH via meconstructionnews.com